An embarrassing cello incident plus something really cool.


So, I was practicing this morning and everything was all honky dory when my husband walks in the room. He’d buzzed all his hair off and trimmed up his beard and looked just plain hot. Which then caused me to bonk my cello. Really really hard. On the bridge. Which ended up turned at about a 15 degree angle. Go me!

So, in my embarrassment, I didn’t want to call my luthier and decided I would fix this myself. Yeah, you read that right. I decided to fix it myself. Luckily, since I’d gotten my cello back three days ago and measured where the bridge was out of curiosity, I knew exactly where it should be. Moving the bridge into just the right spot was excruciatingly difficult. Then I got it where it should be, but there was one little corner of one foot that had a tiny little gap that I could stick a piece of paper under. It look about half an hour of manipulation to get rid of that pesky gap.

But I did it. And you know what? MY CELLO SOUNDS FUCKING AWESOME. You know those overtones that Jon Silpayamanant was talking about in a comment to my post Hi, 6th position!? It was land of crazy overtones. I was even able to start manipulating them like he was talking about. Interestingly, figuring out how to do so has totally changed my bowing technique. It’s impossible to describe in words, but it’s pretty damn awesome. @Jon, I so wish you didn’t live half a country away because you really need to hear this!!


4 responses »

  1. You’ve finally found the promised land of the overtones! 😀

    It was how I taught myself how to relax my bowhand so that I could learn how to make tiny adjustments to change the sounds of emphasizing different overtones. Pretty neat, eh?

  2. Very cool!

    Although I do all my own setup work on my guitar (not that I play it much anymore) I’m a little apprehensive of fiddling with my cello. Not that I’m frightened of breaking anything, it’s just it would be soooo embarrasing having to take it in with the strings, bridge and tailpiece in a bag if the soundpost fell over. Just couldn’t live that down.

  3. I’ve bonked my cello, but I didn’t have the sensuous excuse that you did; my mistakes tended to hit the pegboard rather than the bridge. I’m curious about what you did during that half hour that got the bridge “just so”.

    I’m very happy for you. Maybe if my wife would interrupt my practices more often….

    • Ha! Usually I get mad when he interrupts me! The only thing that was really different was that I squeezed the feet closer together by a couple mm. I hit the tuning pegs a lot too. Really wishing I had a hard case now that I’m happy with where the bridge is.

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